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Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2012 Aug;9(8):2562-86. doi: 10.3390/ijerph9082562. Epub 2012 Jul 25.

Occurrence and spatial and temporal variations of disinfection by-products in the water and air of two indoor swimming pools.

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Département de santé environnementale et santé au travail, École de santé publique de l'Université de Montréal, C.P.6128 Succursale Centre-Ville, Montréal, QC, Canada.


In order to improve disinfection by-product (DBP) exposure assessment, this study was designed to document both water and air levels of these chemical contaminants in two indoor swimming pools and to analyze their within-day and day-to-day variations in both of them. Intensive sampling was carried out during two one-week campaigns to measure trihalomethanes (THMs) and chloramines (CAMs) in water and air, and haloacetic acids (HAAs) in water several times daily. Water samples were systematically collected at three locations in each pool and air samples were collected at various heights around the pool and in other rooms (e.g., changing room) in the buildings. In addition, the ability of various models to predict air concentrations from water was tested using this database. No clear trends, but actual variations of contamination levels, appeared for both water and air according to the sampling locations and times. Likewise, the available models resulted in realistic but imprecise estimates of air contamination levels from water. This study supports the recommendation that suitable minimal air and water sampling should be carried out in swimming pools to assess exposure to DBPs.


disinfection by-products; exposure assessment; spatial and temporal variations; swimming pool; volatilization model; water and air monitoring

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